CALGARY -- The University of Calgary provides a $16.5 billion economic impact annually to Alberta's economy while supporting roughly 22,500 jobs, according to a new study by Hanover Research.

The university is not only one of the largest employers in the province — with direct university spending totaling about $1.45 billion — it also supports by "spending with impact."

University of Calgary’s biosafety Level 3 lab is one of only a few in Canada where researchers can join in the fight against infections disease like COVID-19.

U of C president Ed McCauley says Calgarians should be proud of the institution.

“The magnitude of this number, I hope helps Calgarians realize we are a major part of the growth and prosperity of the city of Calgary.” He said.

"Our community helped build this university and we are growing into a major research university that I think given the entrepreneurial spirit that our students, faculty and staff have in working with our community can really change the world for a better place."

According to the study, UCalgary is known as o​ne of Canada’s leading research universities, attracting more funders per graduate student than any of the countries Top 10.   

“One of the things that surprised me was how the investments that we attract from outside the province are actually contributing to  significant economic growth,” said McCauley.

"Just our research income that we attract from outside alone is generating about $8 billion in economic activity and that’s a significant investment right now in Calgary."

McCauley hopes the study, which is now published on the university's website, will not only attract further support from community and industry partners needed to support its programs but will also attract students from across the globe.

“This also enables us to tell more of our story, to be able to attract talent from around the world to join us here in Calgary," he said.

"That talent attracts new investment creates new opportunities, new potential jobs as well as potential transformation for the economic future of Calgary."

 McCauley says he sees UCalgary’s role as working in partnership with our community to foster and grow this economic impact.

“We want to help to create future prosperity for Albertans as we are dealing with some pretty challenging issues that we’re facing right now in society,” he said.

"Every day our students, faculty and staff, with support from the community, create new ideas, explore new avenues to help diversify the economy of Alberta, supporting existing sectors but also thinking to the future.”​